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Three future Wildcats listed in top 35 of final ESPN100 rankings

Jack Pilgrim04/21/21


Article written by:On3 imageJack Pilgrim
Daimion Collins
<small>(Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)</small>

(Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Kentucky has three of the top 35 high school seniors signed on for the 2021-22 season, along with the No. 2 point guard in the class also seriously considering the Wildcats.

In ESPN’s final player rankings for the class of 2021, Daimion Collins came in at No. 17 overall, followed by Nolan Hickman at No. 22 and Bryce Hopkins at No. 31. TyTy Washington, who received a scholarship offer from Kentucky last week, came in at No. 12 overall and would become the program’s highest-rated commitment if he decides to join the fold in the coming weeks.

Check out the final rankings:

1. Chet Holmgren
2. Jaden Hardy
3. Paolo Banchero
4. Patrick Baldwin Jr.
5. Jabari Smith
6. Caleb Houstan
7. Michael Foster
8. Kennedy Chandler
9. Nate Bittle
10. Peyton Watson
11. Moussa Diabate
12. TyTy Washington
13. J.D. Davison
14. Hunter Sallis
15. Kendall Brown
16. Max Christie
17. Daimion Collins
18. Efton Reid
19. Brandon Huntley-Hatfield
20. Harrison Ingram
21. Trevor Keels
22. Nolan Hickman
23. Tamar Bates
24. Bryce McGowens
25. Aminu Mohammed
26. Langston Love
27. A.J. Griffin
28. Matt Cleveland
29. Jaylon Tyson
30. Benny Williams
31. Bryce Hopkins

Collins is listed as the No. 10 overall prospect in the latest 247Sports and Rivals rankings, while Hickman comes in at No. 32 overall in the 247Sports rankings and No. 39 in the Rivals rankings. Hopkins is also ranked No. 28 overall by Rivals and No. 39 overall by 247Sports.

“I’m really excited for Daimion and his family to join our program,” Calipari said of Collins on National Signing Day. “Daimion is an incredible young man with a bright future – someone who has only begun to realize just how good he can be. Our fans know I don’t like to make comparisons to our other guys, but Daimion has that type of length, the athleticism and the versatility that have separated our players from others. He wanted to be pushed and to be in a competitive environment to help him reach his full potential.”

“I had the chance to see a lot of Nolan in the year or so before the pandemic hit,” Calipari added of Hickman. “I am really excited about his ability to play the point guard position. He has speed, vision and scoring ability. One of the best things about Nolan is his competitive spirit. He plays to win, which our best guards I’ve coached do. Nolan is someone who can play multiple positions in the backcourt, who can fly in transition, and most importantly can create for himself and his teammates. Our guys will love playing with Nolan as he is a team-first player who is incredibly mature.”

“Bryce has the skillset and the versatility for where our game is going,” Calipari said of Hopkins. “It’s positionless, high-skilled basketball, and Bryce has both. He can play multiple positions and attack other players in different ways. His ability with the ball allows him to play on the perimeter, but he also has the size and the toughness to play at the basket. Bryce’s dream was to play on the biggest stage in college basketball. He will get to do that here at Kentucky.”

ESPN also updated their rankings for 2022 and 2023, with UK commit Skyy Clark coming in at No. 13 overall and the No. 3 point guard in the class. Kentucky target Jalen Duren comes in at No. 2 overall, followed by Keyonte George at No. 5, Chris Livingston at No. 6, Jarace Walker at No. 8, Jaden Bradley at No. 9, Brandon Miller at No. 12 and Cason Wallace at No. 14.

Major UK target D.J. Wagner is also ranked No. 1 overall in the class of 2023.

To find the updated ESPN rankings, click here. 

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